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‘Stunning’ restoration of heritage home in Tasmania’s Midlands to feature on Grand Designs

Pulse Tasmania
Stuart and Karen with host Yasmine Ghoniem. Image / Brad Harris

The remarkable transformation of a 200-year-old Georgian sandstone home in Tasmania’s Southern Midlands will feature on ABC TV’s ‘Grand Designs Transformations’ show tonight.

Karen and Stu Miles, the couple behind the project, have spent three years meticulously renovating the two-bedroom heritage home in Oatlands.

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Dubbed “Petit Chateau” (meaning small castle in French), their labor of love will showcase an extension twice the size of the original structure, blending the traditional Georgian aesthetic with a chic French provincial flair.

The Miles say the project was inspired by a moment of reflection in Paris following the passing of Karen’s father’s, with the pair aiming to show off the serenity and beauty of French gardens in their Tasmanian haven.

Before and after in the kitchen of the Oatlands home. Image / Karen Miles & Brad Harris

Karen fell in love with Oatlands during a work visit and knew she wanted to make the Midland’s town her future home.

“I was like, what is this place. I felt like I’d just stepped back in time. The massively wide streets, the beautiful old sandstone buildings, I just instantly fell in love and I didn’t want to leave,” Karen said.

The newly renovated home in Oatlands. Image / Brad Harris
The newly renovated home in Oatlands. Image / Brad Harris

After purchasing the property for $285,000 just before COVID in 2020, Karen and Stu weren’t able to start renovating the house for several months until border restrictions eased.

Once construction got underway, the couple worked with Hobart-based architect Graeme Corney and heritage builder Peter Evans with a renovation budget of $500,000.

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The renovation will feature on Channel 2 at 8pm on Thursday.

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